Friday, April 30, 2010

Wee Knit Jumper

This little jumper has been sitting in my knitting basket for about a month waiting for the most minuscule of finishing until it can be worn. Thankfully (almost) the summery weather we've been having broke yesterday, and a fine spring day-with lovely smelling rain emerged. It was a perfect day for a chunky knitted dress.

The dress is adapted from this pattern by Blue Sky Alpacas. I used Bernat Chunky Twists, the colour is fantastic- bright and tulip-y cheerful- we got several pleasant comments on it yesterday- which the girl met with the stony faced seriousness she reserves for strangers.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

In the Land of Fabric

Yesterday I went to the time vacuum that is Fabricland-It doesn't matter what I'm there for it always takes an hour- always. All I needed was a backing for this vintage table linen which I intend to turn into a summer blanket, and I did get that- it's really more white than it appears, the pattern doesn't stand out so much.

But I also came away with this fetching bargain centre knit and some brown stretch lace trim.

I'm not really sure how old this fabric is- it's one of those instances of something so wrong it's right, which I've discovered happens a lot in a small town fabric store. Like many yards of fabric that now sit in my 'stash', I just had to have it. I wonder if something you have to deliberately get measured and cut still be considered an impulse buy?

Monday, April 26, 2010

Monday Inspiration: Frederick Horsman Varley

F.H. Varley. John, c. 1920-21,
Oil on Canvas. National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa.
(source: Joan Murray, Masterpeices, Tom Thompson and the group of seven. Prospero books, 1994.)

F.H. Varley. Portrait of Alice Massey, c. 1924-25
Oil on Canvas. Private Collection.
(source: Joan Murray, Masterpeices, Tom Thompson and the group of seven. Prospero books, 1994.)

I first saw a group of paintings by F.H. Varley before I decided to study art, and they blew me away, his colour choices were so vibrant and subjective. His portraits speak outside the canvas- the subjects are real, meaty and alive. I imagine his paintings of them are far more accurate than any photograph could be.

Varley also painted landscapes and was part of the Group of Seven- Canadian painters known for their rugged landscapes of Canada as empty wilderness. There are more portraits and city scenes among the collective works of the Group of Seven than Varley's, and they're all good, but to me Varley's paintings stand out from the rest. They celebrate the flesh and bones human, as well as the soul.

more links to Varley info and works:

Urbane Magazine

Town of Markham- Varley Art Gallery

Friday, April 23, 2010

Colour Week- Orange

No post on orange would be complete without the sweet pea's favorite orange toy- Nelson the cat. I swear she knew his name before she knew her own. Nelson can be a bit moody sometimes (my nieces will attest to that)- but with our babe he's been an angel from the moment we brought her home. Possibly he's so starved for attention that he'll take anything- even if it means getting his ears pulled- but I prefer to believe he loves her as much as she loves him.

Thursday, April 22, 2010


The sight of burgeoning seeds never fails to amuse me. Every time I plant seeds I'm aware of the possibility that they may not sprout- and then they grow, seemingly from nothing, and it restores all my faith.

I know people who argue that things like seeds sprouting are not miracles, because they happen everyday, and I suppose in a strict sense they're right, but to me the seed itself is a miracle. The existence of something that can begin a life, that's just waiting for all the right circumstances to fall into place, and then it will uncurl a little green shoot and start lifting itself out of the dirt, is miraculous to me.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Colour Week- Yellow

You'll have to excuse the blurriness- sometimes life is too exciting to sit still- even though it's 7 am

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Blue Eyes

There's been an unexpected bonus for me in becoming a mom; seeing the world through my baby's eyes. Part of what fascinated me about being trained as an artist was the way it opened up my eyes to the world around me. I was training my eye to see details, and it was like getting a new lease on life- everything was exciting- the most drab day could be turned around by careful observation of the way that light hit my coffee cup.

But after a few years of Art school- it got old again. Somehow in the work required to get a degree, I tuned out the simple joy of observing the world, I got absorbed in other aspects of art, and forgot that the most important and joyful part of creating art is observing the world.

I love that part of art making- and through my daughters eyes I'm getting to relive that 'awakening'. It's a gift I didn't expect, and one that I'm so grateful to her for.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Kids Colour Week- Red

We're taking part in Kids Colour Week over at Young Ones , today is Red-and considering that the grass is green (unbelievably green for April in Manitoba) and well groomed, we took ourselves outside for a little bit of sunshine.


I'm Angela, wife, mother, artist. I've had this space set aside for a while- not sure if I was really wanting to fill it. I'm a bit of an introvert you see, and even though I've been wanting to reach out and share my experiences here, I've been unsure of how to begin- call it the fear of the blank page if you will- when possibilities abound and you're not sure where to start.

I want this to be a welcoming space where I can share my thoughts- mostly on how my life and art intersect. I've recently become a mom, and the focus in my life has changed, where I used to be absorbed in making Art (capital A art that is- Gallery Art, Academic Art, Art with a big message), I'm now interested in how to live my life in a way that feels like making art, whether it is by actually creating something- or by being as thoughtful and considered as I am in creating a piece of art, while I'm doing everyday things.

I hope you'll enjoy these posts- and that you'll let me know what you think in the comments section, I'd love to hear from you.